Councilís economic stimulus package to keep Melbourne afloat

The City of Melbourne has announced a local economic stimulus package valued at more than $10 million to keep Melburnians in jobs and support city businesses affected by the COVID-19 virus.

Councillors endorsed the support package, which will include:

  • a virtual Business Support Summit at Melbourne Town Hall,
  • suspending fees for Food Act registrations and street trading permits for three months,
  • halving rent for eligible tenants in Council owned buildings for three months,
  • opportunities to deploy casual and part-time staff to enhance city cleanliness and amenity, and
  • developing a Rates Hardship Policy for consideration by the end of this month.

The City will host a virtual COVID-19 Business Support Summit in partnership with the Victorian Government, Department of Health and Human Services, Federal Government representatives, Victoria’s Chief Health Officer and Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

In moving the motion, Deputy Lord Mayor, Arron Wood, said, "We recognise that cash flow management will be a pressing issue for small businesses in the coming weeks and months.

“We’re developing an investment package to provide direct support to businesses. This will include up to $1 million for training and support and up to $500,000 in grants to support businesses to develop e-commerce and online services.

“We will also implement a Business Concierge Service that will provide one on one advice and support to Melbourne businesses negatively impacted by COVID-19.”

Lord Mayor, Sally Capp, said, “The economic impacts from this virus will be significant and we’re encouraging everybody to support local businesses wherever they can.

"In partnership with Spotless Services, we will also provide cross training and employment for approximately 200 affected casual staff to be redeployed to work on improving city cleanliness and presentation."

The Lord Mayor said the City of Melbourne would be working with Queen Victoria Market management to provide appropriate support to traders.

"Queen Victoria Market is the lifeblood of our city and we're doing everything we can support traders affected by the downturn.

“We're doing everything we can to help businesses stay open and keep Melburnians in jobs."